My expectations for the Lifetime Britney Spears biopic, Britney Ever After, were not high. Although Lifetime neglected to take any of the suggestions I offered, I tuned in last weekend for the premiere to witness this “toxic” train wreck.
In the rare moments when I didn’t sound like Donald Trump at a press conference, yelling, “No! No! No!” I managed to take some notes for those out there with enough self-respect to not subject themselves to the torture of watching a Lifetime movie.
Within the first five minutes we see the inside of Britney’s first tour bus and a flat screen TV hanging from the wall. The year is 1998. Granted, Sony introduced the first flat screen in 1997 and sold it for $15,000, but it’s still highly unlikely. Then in 2001, Britney is seen texting Justin on an iPhone. Did texting even exist in 2001? Maybe. But iPhones did not.
Britney was also seen wearing American Eagle jeans and shorts throughout the entire film. Yes, I’d recognize that pocket print anywhere. Although I have no absolute proof that Britney did not take advantage of AE’s buy one get one 50% off denim deal, I can take an educated guess that a girl whose first album sold 30 million copies was not rocking denim daisy dukes that could be found at any mall in America.
The movie depicted her famous meltdown, featuring Britney and her notorious shaved head swatting off paparazzi and her own convertible with an umbrella. Anyone who picked up a tabloid in 2007 knows that it was a SUV belonging to the paparazzi that she was “Carrie Underwood-ing.”
Lastly, out of all the iconic outfits Britney has worn throughout her career, the movie mastered none of them. The nude bodysuit wasn’t a bodysuit at all, they had her wearing a hat at the 2007 VMAs, a purple wig instead of a pink wig, and they put in her a denim pantsuit instead of a dress to match Justin’s Canadian tuxedo. * gasp *
What was missing
Besides talent, there were many other details omitted from this film. Such as decent southern accents, acknowlegement to Crossroads, Von Dutch trucker hats and the lime green limo used in her Las Vegas wedding when she married her former high school boyfriend for 55 hours.
Most noticeably though, the film was missing Britney’s music. That’s right, not one Britney song appeared in the film. Ms. Spears did not give this film her blessing or the rights to her music. The movie did feature (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction and I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll which Britney did covers of, but the voice was not Britney’s and the lyrics were altered as well. However, the film did feature music that appeared to be written by a deaf 10-year-old.
To Lifetime’s credit, they didn’t do an awful job casting Justin Timberlake. The guy had the hair and the voice, just not the acting ability or quality lines. For example, in Justin’s first scene he calls Britney “the bomb diggity.” I’m not kidding. Then, in a moment that was supposed to be sweet and heartfelt, he tells Britney before a show to “break a leg; break everything.” Which is fitting, since that’s what Britney and Justin will probably do if they ever get drunk and bored enough to watch this portrayal. Especially after watching this corny scene where *NSYNC sings to Brit on her birthday. “You’re one year older, girl.”
For the sake of time, the film rushed the budding romance of Britney and Justin by having them kiss, say they love each other and hook up for the first time all in the same scene. What a disgrace. I know they were the most desirable couple of the new millennium but give the hormonal teens some credit and respect, please.
Any true Justney fan knows their nicknames for one another were Pinky and Stinky. The biopic took it into their own hands to reveal a (hopefully false) explanation for the nicknames. While they were secretly dating, Justin put a ring on Brit’s finger, calling her his “Pinky.” Britney’s way of telling him that she wanted to go public with their relationship was apparently whispering to him, “I want everyone to know you’re my stinky.” WHAT. I should have shut off the TV right then.
Britney Ever After continues to embellish the love affair by hinting that Britney and Justin made a sex tape that was stolen. This has never once been mentioned in the media. As if Britney’s life wasn’t dramatic enough, Lifetime thought they needed to add this plot twist. It’s disgusting and disrespectful, if you ask me.
Their relationship begins to get rocky when Britney sees Justin talking to a girl a bar, who Britney then calls a skank, and ends the argument with this major buuuuurn, “Well, I’m not the one slippin’ in the charts.” Ouch. After the breakup, Britney’s parents get a divorce and she makes a desperate phone call to her former beau, but to her dismay, she goes straight to voicemail but not before hearing this message: “Do your thang, after the beep.” For some reason I feel like this could be the only truthful part of the film. Imagine calling Justin Timberlake on your Nokia in 2002 and hearing that message. It’s totally believable.
However, heartache was far from over for Britney. She later sees Justin with another girl at a nightclub. When she rushes over to him saying they need to talk, his response is, “Get over it. I have.” Any person besides Britney Freaking Spears would have walked away. But not Miss American Dream Since She Was Seventeen. Brit challenges him to a (very poorly choreographed) dance off. Because who can get complete closure without making a former lover dance to their death, right?
The movie’s last scene with Justin was almost heartfelt. He shows up at the 2007 VMAs with a message he wants delivered to Brit. “Tell her to break everything. She’ll know what it means.” AWH. *eyeroll*
The most shocking part of Britney Ever After was that Kevin Federline was actually attractive. I did not see that coming. This is interesting because out of all the blondes in America with rock hard abs, they settled on an Australian chick who looks like a mix of Tiffany Trump and the little Chloe girl from that famous meme (whose facial expression was plastered on my face for two hours while watching this movie) but somehow managed to find a muscular dreamboat to play K-Fed. Not accurate, but still enjoyable. I made the prediction that they would just go out on the street and spot a 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse containing a fake diamond stud earring, Ed Hardy, K-Swiss-wearing twenty-something sporting a chinstrap to play the role. But no, they managed to go above and beyond.
The K-Fed portion of the film was also the most entertaining, despite the inaccurate bridesmaid dresses. We find out that K-Fed’s nickname was “Meat Pole.” LOL. I doubt it’s true, but good joke, Lifetime. Another (hopefully inaccurate) detail added to the film was the method Britney used to tell Kevin she wanted a divorce. She texted him “I wnt 2 dvrce u.” Classy. I love it.
Lifetime did manage to get one aspect of casting correct – this subject of the film was almost identical to the real-life equivalent. Banana. The snake used in the movie looks like a twin to the albino Burmese python that she danced with at the 2001 VMAs. Well done, Lifetime. Snaps and claps all around, ya’ll.